As part of efforts to improve the reading standards of young children, graduates should lead lessons in every nursery in England – at least that’s what campaigners say.
Graduates wanted to help kids learn to read
According to the campaign group Read On. Get On, more than half a million children in independent nurseries are missing out on the benefits of having a qualified early years teacher. In a recent report, the Read On. Get On described the quality of early education in England as being “too variable.”
Children from more deprived areas were found to perform considerably worse. It is argued that many of these children are already behind before they start school and this contributes to literacy problems later.
Figures show that one in five 11-year-olds in England cannot read to a sufficient standard. To make matters worse, a report found that just 13% of staff in independent nurseries (which account for 75% of the total nurseries in England) have a relevant degree.
Finding a solution to a growing problem
Read On. Get On called on the next government to commit to ensuring that in five years’ time there’s a graduate leading lessons in every nursery, with a priority placed on those teaching disadvantaged children.
The campaign group said: “Every young child, but especially those growing up in poverty, should be able to benefit from good quality early education led by a trained early years graduate. Currently, two in five children attending free early education in a private nursery are missing out.”
How many graduates would be needed?
Read On. Get On added that this move by the government would require 11,000 more graduates. Dame Julia Cleverdon, Chairwoman of the campaign, said: “It’s time to make nurseries the front line in tackling social mobility.
“Every child deserves a fair start in life – regardless of the wealth of their family. By providing quality and qualified teaching in every nursery, we can ensure every child arrives at school with the building blocks in place to learn to read and succeed.”
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